Summer Public Service Program 2023
Eligible Students and Organizations
The SPSP is available to rising 2L and 3L JD students at Texas Law. An eligible sponsoring organization is a:
- government office,
- 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization,
- 501(c)(4) tax-exempt social welfare organization,
- international NGO, government office, or intergovernmental organization, or
- legislative office.
Judicial offices, trade associations, unions, and private employers are not eligible. Students with positions in courts may be able to earn academic credit through the Judicial Internship course.
Funding and Work Expectations
Fellowships will be provided for full-time work at eligible sponsoring organizations for a minimum of 5 weeks and a maximum of 10 weeks. The stipend will be $600/week and will not be pro-rated for partial weeks. A student may split a 10-week fellowship between two organizations, but funding is not available for any position of fewer than 5 weeks. The work must be law-related and supervised by an attorney or by another professional working closely with an attorney. Students may perform their work in-person or remotely.
Students will follow the policies of the sponsoring organization regarding the definition of “full-time work” and the observance of holidays. Any absences for minor illnesses will be handled by the student with the sponsoring organization. Extraordinary circumstances requiring extended absences from work will be addressed by the SPSP on an individual basis
If a sponsoring organization or another source within the law school or the University provides funding for an eligible position, the student is not eligible for SPSP support unless the amount provided is less than $600/week (in which case the SPSP will supplement that funding to reach $600/week). There is no cap on a student receiving additional funding from outside sources for (1) the eligible position, or (2) unrelated work undertaken during the summer. An “outside source” is a third party that is not the sponsoring organization and is external to the law school and the University. A student may accept payment from a sponsoring organization for additional weeks of work after completing a 10-week fellowship supported by the SPSP.
A student must disclose all funding awarded for a SPSP-supported position to all funders.
A student who receives a full 10-week fellowship and doesn’t receive outside funding for their position is eligible to receive an additional 1 or 2 weeks of SPSP funding if (1) the additional weeks of work are otherwise unpaid, and (2) the student expects their educational debt for law school to exceed the average amount for our student borrowers ($80,000). The result will be the student working for 11 or 12 weeks with $600/week support from the SPSP.
Rapoport Center Summer Fellowships
A separate application is required for summer fellowships administered by the Audre and Bernard Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice. See the Rapoport Center website for information.
Application Information for Summer 2023
SPSP applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and each approved student will be notified by email. Applications received by noon on Friday, March 10, 2023, will be considered for named fellowships. Students who wish to apply for a named fellowship will indicate their interest and provide a short statement on the general application form. The final deadline for all applications is midnight on Monday, May 8, 2023.
The Justice Center will administer the program through Canvas. To start the application process, send an email to email@example.com and you will be added to the SPSP Canvas site within 2-3 days (and receive a notification email from Canvas). Application instructions and all forms are on Canvas.
To Apply for a Fellowship
- Submit an application, which includes an optional question for students applying for named fellowships, and resume
- Submit an email or letter from the organization (or organizations if more than one) confirming:
a. The dates or number of weeks the student will work
b. The work will be law-related
c. The student will be supervised by an attorney or a professional working closely with an attorney
d. The position is uncompensated (or list the compensation provided)
- Sign an agreement
- Review training materials in preparation for the position (available as a recording)
Requirements at End of Summer
- Attest to completing the weeks of work funded by SPSP
- Evaluate the work experience using the CSO evaluation form
- Report all work performed and all funding received during the summer (this will help us understand student needs moving forward)
Additional Requirements for Receiving a Named Fellowship
- Appear in a photograph on the law school website (see examples here)
- Write a thank you note to the donor at the end of the summer